Quino El Guardian

The inspiration behind the Quino was the time spent with marine biologist groups on our sister ship, the Rocio Del Mar. Our experience with them was so incredibly impactful that we wanted more. We believe that that we make the world a better place one diver at a time.

The Quino gives divers the opportunity to visit magical destinations such as Socorro, the Sea of Cortez and the Baja Peninsula at a lower price without compromising the level of service and delicious food our guests have come to know on the Rocio Del Mar.

The Quino offers truly unique diving experiences including Citizen Science Expeditions, regular dive charters, as well as the availability for other unique private charters. We all carry the concience and awareness that while we are privledged to have experienced the wonders of the underwater world, we also carry the responsibility to protect it. That is why the Quino El Guardian is created. She was once a fishing vessel and was redesigned into a ship whose sole purpose is for scuba diving and scientific research.

The vessel is 90 ft long with a 25 ft beam. The Quino comfortably accommodates 16 passengers with additional space for the group leaders with the crew.

There are 5 cabins: 4 quad cabins and 1 cabin with 2 beds
4 Quad Cabins

  • There are two bunks on each side equaling 4 beds, each with a privacy curtain
  • Each cabin is outfitted with 4 large drawers, one for each guest
  • Additional storage is available below the lower bunks
  • The cabins are arranged by gender

1 Dual Cabin

  • There are two bunks each with a privacy curtain 
  • This cabin is typically reserved for a couple

Each day you will enjoy a continental breakfast, full plated breakfast, plated lunch starting with a hot soup, afternoon snack, and a three course dinner including salad, entree and dessert. Hot and cold beverages are always available including canned soft drinks.  Complimentary beer and wine is available after your last dive of the day. Please let us know if you have any special dietary needs and we will do our utmost to accommodate you. 

Air Conditioning: 
There is air conditioning throughout all interior areas including the restrooms for everyone’s comfort. Each cabin has an individually operated air conditioner that can be adjusted by the occupants.

There are 4 spacious, air conditioned bathrooms with a full size shower in each - each cabin is assigned a bathroom so guests can keep their toiletries, towels or personal items in the bathroom.

Comfortably accommodates all 16 passengers with a projector and a drop-down screen for group presentation.

The salon is comfortable with sofas, a TV and a computer table

Dive Deck:  
Very large and well organized with gear storage for all your diving equipment

Camera Table:  
Spacious with under storage and multiple outlets

Dive Platform:  
Large platform with easy access to the inflatables with a warm water rinse shower

Two onboard compressors - Nitrox available at an additional charge of $120 USD per diver

Large shaded sundeck with lawn chairs, perfect for relaxing between dives

Inflatable Dive Boats: 
2 inflatable boats with drivers to get you to the dive spots and back to the boat. Both have very sturdy ladders for the safety and ease of our divers. Divers remove their weights and BCD's in the water and hand them to the boat driver prior to climbing the ladder

Bathroom and dive deck towels are provided.  Towels are changed during the trip and as requested.

The Quino El Guardian is of the utmost sea worthiness and is approved by both the U.S. Coast Guard and the Mexican Coast Guard. It is equipped with state-of-the-art electronics and all safety equipment required.

Sample Itinerary- Socorro
The Revillagigedo Islands (also Revillagigedo Archipelago) are a group of four volcanic islands in the Pacific Ocean, known for their unique ecosystem. The islands are home to many endemic plant and animal species.  Socorro island is the most diverse in flora, fauna, and topography.

These islands are a spectacular magnet for the largest ocean pelagic animals in the world. Animals include schooling Hammerhead Sharks, Tiger Sharks, Dolphins, Silky Sharks, Galapagos Sharks, clouds of Jacks and Barracuda, Tuna, Wahoo, Oceanic White Tip Sharks, Whale Sharks and Manta Rays.

This destination can only be dived by a liveaboard dive vessel. It lies 250 miles off Baja's southern shore and takes approximately 26 hours one-way to reach the islands. This is an excellent dive destination for large pelagics due to the open ocean nature of the islands, which sometimes include currents and choppy conditions. The underwater topography consists of rocky outcroppings, boulders and some incredible walls. There is not much in the way of coral as this is a cooler water destination.

Day 1 - Board the boat between 5pm-7pm the day of departure. After enjoying a wonderful dinner, relax on board the boat. The Quino departs just after midnight for Socorro and you arrive at San Benedicto in the morning giving you a full day of diving!

Day 2 – Day at Sea

Day 3 – San Benedicto, 4 dives scheduled

Day 4 – Socorro, 3 dives scheduled (check in with Naval Station)

Day 5 – Socorro, 4 dives scheduled

Day 6 – Roca Partida, 3 dives scheduled

Day 7 – Roca Partida, 3 dives scheduled

Day 8 – San Benedicto, 4 dives scheduled. At the end of this day we will start our departure to San Jose del Cabo

Day 9 – Arrive at San Jose del Cabo around 11pm. Guests may sleep on the boat.

Day 10 - Disembark by 8:30am

Sample Itinerary- Sea of Cortez
With clear, deep waters, abundant sea life, golden sandy beaches and inspiring vistas, the Sea of Cortez - known as the Gulf of California - is a breathtaking destination for scuba diving, snorkeling, sailing, boating, and exploring diverse marine creatures. Legendary diver Jacques Cousteau described the Sea of Cortez as the "world's aquarium". Dive on untouched walls and reefs abounding in marine life. Encounter large and small whale species, whale sharks, jumping mobula rays, and sea lion colonies. Hike and explore remote uninhabited islets. Dine under the stars in a calm anchorage, socialize with your shipmates and make new friends. All in a day aboard Quino el Guardian, combined with personalized service to enhance your live aboard safety and fun. Dive into your dreams and see what Sea of Cortez diving is all about.

Day 1 - Embark at 5pm in Puerto Peñasco.  Depart at 6pm

Day 2 - Wake up at Refugio Bay on Angel Island
Potential Dive sites: Angel Rock, La Vela, Lolo’s Cove
Sunset Zodiak Cruise with Sea Lions

Day 3 -  Angel Island
Potential Dive sites: Andrea’s Eagle, El Aquario, Las Vivoras, Las Vivoras including a night dive

Day 4 - San Pedro Martir
Potential Dive sites: El Arroyo, Punta Martir (Sea Lions), Chayo’s Cove

Day 5 - San Pedro Martir
Potential Dive sites: Ravijunco, Xareni’s Pinnacle, Coromel, Morrito
In afternoon we go looking for whales!

Day 6 - Salsipuedes & Animas
Potential Dive sites: Los Cuervos, El Caballo, In Animas, El Lavadero, El Lavadero including a night dive

Day 7 - Baja and Snorkeling with Whale Sharks in Bahia De Los Angeles
Potential Dive sites: El Pescador, Baja Ca.
Start heading back to Puerto Penasco in afternoon

Day 8 - Disembark at 7am


Citizen Science Trip Details

July 1-8, 2018 / Photographing the Sea of Cortez

July 1-8, 2018
Jonathan Lavan
Sea of Cortez / Midriff Islands
Photographing the Sea of Cortez
$2100 per person, quad occupancy
Jonathan Lavan is a wildlife expert, conservationist, award-winning photographer, environmental writer and educator.
Join Jonathan and the amazing crew of Quino El Guardian for a dive adventure of a lifetime!
Jonathan is on staff to help all budding citizen scientists identify what they are seeing both above and below the waterline. For new photographers, he will be able to help with questions and provide tips for better nature photography.
Daily animal ID classes will be held for those interested utilizing the photos that were taken that day.
Guests will enjoy his sense of humor and camaraderie as he shares his passion for all creatures great and small.
Join Jonathan in his quest for making a difference on this planet through photography and positive messaging.
August 5 - 12, 2018 / New Dive Site Exploration Trip
August 5 - 12, 2018
Sea of Cortez / Midriff Islands
New Dive Site Exploration Trip
$2100 per person, quad occupancy
About the Trip

Are you adventurous? 

We've been going to the Sea of Cortez for years and our popular dive sites only scratch the surface of all that this dynamic body of water has to offer.

We've been itching to explore more and we are looking for 16 adventures souls to go with us.

We will only be diving uncharted dive sites.

This trip is best for advanced divers as we will be going places we haven't been before.

Come along, explore and help us find and name new dive sites!

September 9 - 21, 2018 / Wonders of the Sea of Cortez Pelagic & Reef Wildlife

September 9 - 21, 2018
Dr. Carlos Sanchez
Explore Baja / San Jose del Cabo to Puerto Penasco
Wonders of the Sea of Cortez Pelagic & Reef Wildlife
$3750 per person, quad occupancy
New Lower Price - only $3495 per person!
About the Trip

Join the amazing crew of the Quino El Guardian, Dr. Carlos Sanchez-Ortiz (UABCS) and cDr. Remy Gatyns (University California, Santa Cruz, top Ph.D. student in ecology and genetics of fishes) on one of the most inspiring dive adventures of your lifetime!

Baja is a unique area offering a prolific array of life with corals, invertebrates, fishes, whales and other mammals in unprecedented numbers.

Dr. Sanchez has extensive knowledge in most all animal species found in the Sea of Cortez and specializes in invertebrates, sea fans, gorgonians, and corals. One-third of the biodiversity of the Sea of Cortez is in corals. It is amazing how little is known about these animals. We need to learn more so that we can care for and conserve them.

Activities include

- Describing the individual species
- Census monitoring
- Establish the health of the reef
- Human impact study
- Climate impact study
- Collection of plankton and inspection under a microscope (where the food chain begins)

Dr. Sanchez provides indepth knowledge of the area mammals such as whales, dolphins and sea lions as well as whale sharks.

Enjoy daily research projects and presentations to help answer these questions and more:

- How many and what species are in the Gulf of California?
- How many of them are new to Science & how do we describe a new species?
- How the climate change or human impacts are affecting the reefs biodiversity?
- How Taxonomy can save Biodiversity?
- How healthy are the reefs of the Gulf of California?

Research goals include but are not limited to:

- Invertebrates (sponge, corals and echinoderm) taxonomy to understand their biodiversity
- Invertebrates inventorying to determine their diversity
- Invertebrates and fish tissue sampling to examine their large-scale connectivity through genetics
- Invertebrates and fish monitoring to evaluate the health status of the reef ecosystem
- Assessing the economic value of the reef ecosystem conservation.

Take part in as much or as little as you like!

September 23 - October 5, 2018 / Wonders of the Sea of Cortez Pelagic & Reef Wildlife

September 23 - October 5, 2018
Explore Baja / Puerto Penasco to La Paz
Wonders of the Sea of Cortez Pelagic & Reef Wildlife
Dr. Francisco Solis A Marin
$3750 per person, quad occupancy
New Lower Price - only $3495 per person!
About the Trip

You will never look at Sea Stars and Sea Cucumbers the same again!

Dr. Francisco Alonso Solís Marín is a research Specialist in Echinoderms (Sea stars, Sea cucumbers, Sea Urchins, Sea Lilies and Allies) and Taxonomists. He is Chief Curator of the Echinoderm National Collection, Institute of Marine Sciences and Limnology Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México (UNAM). He has extensive knowledge in echinoderm species found in the Sea of Cortez and specializes in their systematics.

He is currently director of the Research Program for exploring and listing Echinoderm Biodiversity in Mexico, developing studies on:

A) Biodiversity in different ecosystems (Marine and Anchialine Caves) and description of new species

B) Ecology of Echinoderm communities

C) Evaluation of the health status of the principal heavily exploited Echinoderm communities in the Sea of Cortez

This unique trip will help to answer many questions including:

- How did the Echinoderm Taxonomy Studies of the Gulf of California begin?

- Why the Echinoderm diversity and unique species composition in the Sea of Cortez?

- What to do when we discover a new species?

- Why is exploring marine biodiversity still a big task to complete?

As an expert in Echinoderms, Dr. Francisco Solis will take you on a journey of taxonomy and evolutionary discovery, talking on shocking new discoveries about Echinoderms – you will never see Sea Stars and Sea Cucumbers the same again!

He will discuss how the biodiversity of Echinoderms in the Sea of Cortez is still reveling new species. Dr. Solís will share his knowledge on Echinoderm Taxonomy and Biology and how to describe new species.

The principal goal of the expedition will be to explore and document the Echinoderm diversity of the Gulf of California in its different habitats.

Activities include:

- Collect and prepare an echinoderm specimen for its use in a Natural History Collection

- Echinoderm tissue sampling to examine their large-scale connectivity through genetics

- Describing an individual species, inspection under a microscope to reveal the use of Echinoderm’s microstructures to reveal the name of the species

- Echinoderm inventorying to determine their diversity

- Document Sea Star behavior

- Collection of Echinoderm larvae in the plankton

Joining Dr. Solis will be Yuri Hooker from the Peru (Universidad Peruana Cayetano Heridia, Departamento de Ciencias Biológicas y Fisiológicas, Lima, Peru)